The true story behind the invention of the air conditioner
| Quick note: very little of this story is based on fact. Willis Haviland Carrier, despite what this story suggests, did invent the air conditioner. He was a great man, because who is seriously against a/c? thats right, no one. For more information about Willis Haviland Carrier or Air Conditioning, check your local library or internet search engine.
"The Untold History of Air Conditioning"
a brief fabrication of the truth by Justin Willoughby
In early spring 1938, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt launched a research program devoted entirely to the development of the most monumental creation man-kind had ever seen - Air Conditioning (this program later became what we now know as the department of the interior). Hundreds of universities and private laboratories were commissioned to assist government scientists already hard at work on the project, but despite their best efforts,they failed. It seemed as if all hope was lost for obese Louisiana-bred lawyers that wore white suits and developed carpal tunnel syndrome from constantly fanning themselves - and the rest of America was in pretty bad shape as well.
June 14, 1938 once upon a time meant nothing to the citizens of Suit County, Virginia, but now that day is a landmark in local history. On that very day, two of its residents changed the world, but only one would be remembered for it.
In a dilapitated two-story barn hidden from the sun by enormous willow trees, two average men found themselves at a cornerstone in time. While tediously working to develop what would be later known as the "magic fingers" bed, inventors Willis Haviland Carrier and Frederick Jones became irritable and foul smelling in their torrid workspace. After a brief squabble, they decided to set aside both their differences, and the "magic fingers" bed, to address the problem at hand.
Carrier paced around the barn picking up scrap parts from the dozens of other inventions that were never completed and scattered across the dust-covered barn floor. Suddenly his eyebrows raised,jaw widened,and arms released letting all of the recently gathered scraps tumble clumsily to the floor. Carrier darted back to his desk and began drawing frantically in his notebook. He looked up at Frederick who was waiting impatiently to see what had caused his partner to go to near hysterics. "I've figured out how to make it cool and comfortable in here Fred", Carrier said gleefully.
"What you talkin' about Willis?" replied Frederick. The two discussed plans and after hours of trial and error, it was Frederick Jones who completed the first working model. The pair drank excessively to celebrate their achievement, and then settled off to bed in the beautiful,brisk comfort that it provided.
The next morning Frederick awoke parched nearly to death and drenched in sweat, alone in the dilapitated barn. Attached to his forehead by a piece of chewed gum was a note from Willis.
It is with a heavy heart i do this, but regardless, what is done is done. There's no good reason i can give you for why i have stolen our invention, except that i am an asshole.Think about it though - "Carrier Air Conditioner" has a much nicer ring to it than "Carrier-Jones Air Conditioner". You understand, right? I guess I won't be here for the answer to that question. Oh well. Anyways, stay cool!
Willis Haviland Carrier travelled to Washington D.C. via train and on June 15,1938 at 3:45 p.m. eastern standard time, he received the patent for the home air conditioner. He was awarded the congressional medal of honor,and was named TIME magazine's "Man of the Year". Fifteen years later Carrier was tried and convicted as a communist by the McCarthy Commission, and spent the rest of his life exiled in Australia - little did the U.S. government know that Australia hadn't been a penal colony for nearly 80 years. The Carrier Dome may or may not be named in his honor. I do not know.
Frederick Jones never fully recovered from the night he spent in the sweltering barn. Two weeks after his invention was stolen, he moved to Alaska where he finished the "magic fingers" and went on to invent a number of hotel amenities including the mini-shampoo, the "do not disturb" sign, and Gideon's Bible. He died in a tanning booth at the age of 64. Heart attack.